By Lori Bruhns
Well, we all love to make New Years resolutions, right? In fact, you probably already have an idea or two in mind about changes you want to make. Maybe you want to lose 50lbs next year, or quit smoking, or get your Etsy shop up and running, or finally quit that dead end job.
Now, ask yourself how confident you are that you will be able to keep that resolution through February 8th. That’s just over a month into 2017 and it’s an important benchmark.
Let’s consider some relevant statistics:
• Only 8% of people are successful in achieving their resolutions.
• Only 64% of people are able to maintain their resolutions past the first month.
• While people in their 20’s achieve their resolutions 39% of the time, people over 50 achieve their resolutions only 14% of the time.
So why is it so hard to make changes stick? Why are we so bad at keeping our resolutions? What can you do now to ensure that you are part of that elite 8% next year?
Here’s the problem with the way we normally create New Years resolutions: we set these goals for ourselves without putting any thought into the steps needed to get there.
Too often, we resort to the “cold turkey method.” We think, “On Jan. 1, 2017 I will wake up and magically be the kind of person who exercises and eats well.” As a result, we set totally unrealistic expectations or we are simply caught off guard when the old habits start to creep back in.
Instead of setting the intention to quit an old habit cold turkey, how about if you focus on creating routines that will remain and help you achieve your goal?
Here are 3 ways to create Routines that Remain:
For example, if your goal is to quit smoking, spend the first month visualizing the benefits of being a non-smoker. Really feel yourself inhabiting the body of a non-smoker and concentrate on how different you feel.
During the second month, start reducing the number of cigarettes you smoke. The change shouldn’t be too drastic, even skipping one smoke break a day makes a difference. And focus on how even this slight change makes you feel better.
Finally, in month three, make the lifestyle changes that are necessary to become that non-smoker you want to be. Replace your smoking routine with something else that makes you feel good. And celebrate your success instead of dwelling on the negative.
The beauty of the 90-day routine, as opposed to the cold turkey method, is that you don’t have to think of one slip-up as failure. If you have a lapse in your routine, get back on track as soon as you realize it.
It’s okay to falter, but don’t let these lapses become habits of their own. If you are tempted to “cheat” on your diet plan, for example, consider what about your routine isn’t working for you and make the needed adjustment.
Don’t sabotage yourself by letting your routine fall by the wayside just because you are having a bad day. If you are vigilant about sticking to your routine, it will give you comfort during times when those old habits try to weasel their way back into your life.
Start to implement these 3 easy steps today and you’ll be on your way to crushing your New Years resolution.
On February 8th, 2017, you’ll be able to look back on today as the day when you joined the New Years Resolution Revolution and discovered how to make meaningful change a reality in your life.
So, leave the cold turkey for the day after Thanksgiving and get on the path to becoming your most Productive You? Contact me TODAY and let’s get you started on your 90-day routine!
By Lori Bruhns
Yup, you read that right.
I know what you are thinking: “Lori has finally lost her mind completely.”
Nope! I didn’t.
I have been consistently working out for about a year, but have recently plateaued. I am ready to see more growth and so I reached out to my friend Allie who is a runner. What?! If you know me, you know I HATE running. If you don’t know me, all you need to understand is that I seriously only run when I am being chased and yes, when I was in high school, I ran from the cops. But that is a story for another time.
The story for today is that sweet Allie came right over to encourage me and together we ran over two miles. Not bad for someone who hasn’t gone for a run in over two decades, right?
Let me tell you the best part. I felt so good after the run. Not only did I prove to myself that I can silence that annoying voice in my head telling me to lay around, drink wine, and be fine with where I’m at, I learned (again) that making a change really is as easy as getting up, getting out, and making it happen.
Whether you want to lose 20lbs or gain the confidence you need to tell your boss that you want a 20% raise, chances are there’s something you are dreading that has prevented you from making your goal a reality.
The first step is figuring out exactly what it is you’re avoiding. Maybe it’s feeling hungry when you need to be feeling your best. Maybe it’s feeling your boss’s eyes on you as you tell her why you deserve to be paid more. The next step is to imagine yourself living through that moment and then rationally drilling down into it to discover what about it scares you the most.
I find that most of the scariest moments in life go back to personal insecurities and worries about failure. But here’s the thing, failure is more about your perspective than anything else. What if instead of worrying so much about the worse case scenario, you considered what you could learn in the process?
Because the thing is, once you decide to just do that thing you are dreading, the future will be so happy. The only thing that’s really standing in the way of you making that big change is fear and I bet once you get over that hump, you’ll see that the fear was way worse than actually doing the thing you were avoiding.
Here’s a good example of what I’m talking about. I have been working with clients in the multi-level marketing industry, at companies such as Rodan and Fields, Herbalife, and Beauty Counter. The one thing I’ve noticed that all of my clients have in common is that they absolutely HATE the idea of picking up the phone and getting out from behind their computer screens. They are understandably afraid of having to actually face people who might turn them down. But here is the crazy part, once they do it a few times, they actually enjoy it and IT MAKES THEM MONEY! CRAZY!
On Saturday I spoke to the Association of Clinical Research Professionals. This group of highly accomplished and unbelievably brilliant scientists came to me wanting advice about increasing their productivity. I told them the same thing that I tell all my clients: communication in person,not by email, is the one thing they need to do differently to make a big impact when it comes to personal productivity. Why?
Well, just consider some of the ways email communication reduces productivity:
How often have you or someone receiving your email misread the tone of an email?
How often do you send an email because it’s easier than having a difficult face-to-face interaction?
How often would a conversation resolve an issue more quickly than going back and forth via email?
I’m not saying that these scientists are afraid of in person communication, but it is all too easy for us wrapped up in our digital world to forget that there is still a lot to be gained from sitting down with someone and having a real live conversation.
So, I told these research professionals: you are experts and there’s no better way to convey that to others than by talking with them in person. There is a good reason many influential people avoid email like the plague. You don’t have to take my word for it though. The next time you really want something, why not try asking during an in person conversation? You might surprise yourself.
I surprised myself by going for a run and actually feeling great afterward. And I love helping others surprise themselves by achieving more than they thought possible. If you are looking for some additional motivation, contact me and let’s talk about how I can help you improve your productivity.
By Lori Bruhns
Huh?....What is she talking about? Don’t power through my slumps?
What the hell is that?
A circadian rhythm is a roughly 24-hour cycle in the physiological processes of living beings including plants, animals, fungi, and cyanobacteria (cyano-what? It’s a kind of bacteria that lives in the water). Circadian rhythms are important in determining the sleeping and feeding patterns of all animals, including human beings. There are clear patterns of brain wave activity, hormone production, cell regeneration and other biological activities linked to this daily cycle.
Think of your circadian rhythm as your internal clock. If you learn to work with this internal clock, you will be more productive and feel great. Unfortunately, most of us ignore our internal clocks or try to shock them by forcing them to adjust to our crazy, busy schedules. So today I wanted to teach you how to use it to your best advantage.
When it comes to productivity, you probably already think of yourself as either a morning person or a night owl. But what does this really mean? You might think of it as just a simple preference, but the reason you like to be up at 5am, so you can review that report and send important emails by 6:30am, probably has more to do with your body than you realize.
If you like to get work done early in the morning, it means that’s the time when your mind is on. This is me. I am a morning person, so you will see me up at the butt crack of dawn smiling and ready to go. But if it’s after 5pm, don’t come near me because I won’t be able to concentrate on you (or anything else for that matter).
Okay, but what the hell does this have to do with productivity?
If you are a night owl and your brain is in full swing at 10pm, then that’s when you should be doing “productive and mind energizing tasks.” At 7am, do “mindless non communicative tasks” (I know you night owls don’t want anyone talking to you before 9am). Your body, mind, and those around you will thank you for it.
Now, what if you have a job that requires you to work at certain times? What if naturally you’re a night owl, but you have to be a morning person because you have to be at your desk working at 8 or 9am? Well, one thing to consider is that if you want to have a side business to pick up some extra cash or if you want to start a business of your own, you are perfectly positioned to do this. You can work on your business when you are at your sharpest.
But you can also still make the 9 to 5 thing work without hurting yourself in the process.
1. Respond to emails first thing. Check email and respond as soon as you get to your desk, so you don’t have to speak to anyone right away.
2. Do easy, like able tasks early in the day. Save the stuff you hate for later, when you’re feeling more awake and “on.”
3. Plan ahead. Look at your day the night before to find tasks that will be mindless, but effective to do when you aren’t feeling at the top of your game.
This won’t come easy. It will require some adjustments, like training yourself to go to bed at the right time so you get the right amount of sleep. But if you get into a routine and stick with it, you can be more productive while working with your body, instead of against it! Go with your inner flow people!
So what if you want to become a morning person? (Okay, I’m not sure why you want to do this. Morning people are pretty crazy, but I can help.) First and foremost, you can’t just instantly be a morning person when your body is a night owl. Sorry... you can’t just shock your body into it.
1. Get up 5 minutes (yes, just 5!) earlier than you normally do for 1 week straight.
2. Go to bed 10 minutes (yes, just 10!) earlier than you normally do for 1 week straight.
3. Then after the first week, add another 5 minutes and 10 minutes respectively for the next week. Repeat, until you get to your desired wake-up and sleep times.
If you try to do more than this gradual increase at this pace, you will shock your body into an unnatural rhythm and you will pay for it down the line. For example, your immune system won't function as well because your normal hormonal and metabolic functions will be interrupted. So, not listening to your circadian rhythm can lead to more sick days.
Shocking your body can also cause sleep disorders like Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome (DSPS), where your body takes extra long to fall asleep, or Advanced Sleep Phase Syndrome (ASPS), where your body falls asleep early (for example, between 6pm and 9pm) and wakes up early (for example, between 1am and 5am).
Study your body and figure out what time of the day you feel the most energized, the sharpest, and the most like yourself. Once you’ve figured out your inner clock, plan around yourself. If you can stick with it, you will be as productive as possible. Make this the week to get started!
When you search “back to school” the results will be articles, like the ones I used to write, that are focused on the child’s success: stress, sleep, healthy lunches, bullying and more. However, this return to school is also a transition time for adults. The return to routines, schedules, and extracurriculars, marks a new beginning not just for the child but for the whole family.
Do you, like me, fantasize about how you’d like things to be better or different this school year? Have you thought, “I’m going to get up earlier for some me-time” or “I’m going to make time to exercise this year?” or “I’m going to use the school time better and … (maybe find a job or start a business)"
Let’s use this Back-to-School momentum to give you some tangible, positive change that sticks. After all, a goal without a plan is just a wish
1. List 3 things that you’d like to breathe new life into this school year. Is it a career, hobby, exercise, relationship?
2. Choose one to focus on for a week. You can choose the most challenging or the one that will make the greatest impact.
3. Get clear on your WHY. For example, if you are looking to bring some extra money into your family, know why. What will you do with the money? How will it change things for you and your family? Do you want to work standard 9-5 or shorter hours with more flexibility? Personally I like to have time to workout, write, and meditate after my kids go to school and before I go to work, so part-time work that’s flexible yet still allows me to make a substantial income is key.
4. Tell someone your goal and allow them to support you and hold you accountable. Be sure to choose someone who has enough distance that they won’t have a conflicting self-interest and unintentionally sabotage your plans. Choose a friend, colleague, family member, or accountability partner. Not sure who to tell? Tell me. Supporting women and holding them accountable is my super power.
5. Make your mornings count. Mornings are a powerful time of day. It’s the time when we set the tone for the rest of the day, so be mindful of the thoughts you think and the stories you allow yourself to believe. Start your day with a dose of centering and positivity! This could be quiet time with a cup of tea or writing morning pages or reading positive statements, meditating/praying, yoga or running.
These are some of the same steps I incorporate into my life and work. I lead a large team of smart, savvy women, who were drawn to our business and my team for the flexible, part-time work hours and the incredible compensation plan, all while doing meaningful, impactful work. I tell my most successful dynamos that taking 30-60 minutes everyday to center on you and your goals will be the best, most productive 60 minutes of your day. I encourage you too to make them happen!
If you would like to hear more about the business I run, the team of women I work with, the substantial compensation, or the advocacy work that Beautycounter is so devoted to, please send me an email to let me know and look at what we’re up to here.
Emily Geizer is Senior Director at Beautycounter and a certified Holistic Health Coach. She’s on a mission to help women feel beautiful from the inside out. Learn more: www.emilygeizer.com
By Barbara Davidson
Branding seems to be a buzz word when referring to your company’s marketing.
The core of your branding starts with a logo design that will be the image of your company. While all the talk of branding may seem like a buzzword, or a trend, it isn’t. Having a well-designed logo that makes an impression on people is essential to your business’ success! Typically, people have a difficult time remembering names of people. You know what they do remember though?
Logos! Having a logo that catches the eye, will “brand” you in their brain. That is the entire point! You want, and need, to make it so that when it comes to your product or service, people wouldn’t even consider using your competitors. The goal is to dominate your sector, in the eyes of your target audience. This is the measure of effective branding.
Not sold on why you need to brand your business yet? Here are 8 reasons why it is paramount to your success:
1- Credibility - Having an established brand makes you more credible. This is why the notion that branding is for large, corporate companies, with large budgets, is false. If you’re a new business, the last impression you want to give people is that you are “new” or inexperienced. Having a brand makes you look more professional. It also shows that you are dedicated and invested in your business.
2 - It shows what your business is made of - It can be viewed as the DNA of your company. It tells people what you do, how you connect and interact with people, and what you want to accomplish for them.
3 - Attract more clients - It is not uncommon for people to make buying decisions based off of the look and feel of a company. If a person is researching a particular product or service online, and there are a plentitude of buying options, they are going to go with who makes them feel good. If you don’t have a brand, you will be quickly swept to the wayside.
4 - Stand out from competitors - A logo helps you stand out from your competitors. If you spend the time to come up with a unique logo and branding strategy, you will find a way to stand out from competition. A tag line, an image, and color scheme are all things that make you unique. When you have a clearly defined strategy and brand in place, you will recognize when something doesn’t fit. This can save a lot of time on pursuing other marketing avenues.
5 - Your brand helps you connect with your customers emotionally - After you have built trust and recognition through your brand, your clients will start to connect with your brand emotionally. This is similar to developing any type of friendship or relationship with a person. Once clients get to know you, they start to like you. Then they begin to trust you. When this happens, they begin to connect with you on an emotional level and this is when customer loyalty begins.
We are all familiar with the adage that people do business with people that they know, like, and trust. This still holds true today, and even spills into online marketing. People do business with people that they know, like, and trust as a brand, even when shopping online. Whether it’s online, or in person, there is a fourth factor that should be added to the end of that adage. People do business with people they know, like, trust, and connect with emotionally.
So how do you go about accomplishing that? It’s not really that difficult. The problem lies with business owners being willing to dedicate dollars from their company to the investment in their branding.
6 - Brands help describe a typical line of business - With so many people putting forth effort to hone in on their niche areas of business, sometimes it becomes a bit difficult to quickly grasp what it is a particular product is helpful for, or how we could benefit from a specific service.
If you have a “descriptive” logo, meaning visually descriptive, it makes it much easier for people to quickly grasp what it is you are offering, and how it is that it could help them! Embroidery For You! has purple for its “corporate color”.
We never attend a design session, client meeting, or networking event without wearing our signature purple apparel with our embroidered logo in bright colors.
7 - It supports advertising - Advertising is part of your brand too. Where companies sometimes fail with their branding is when it is too narrow, or too broad; both have huge negative effects. Having a demographic that is too narrow can result in not being able to expand into other avenues to grow your business.
This is commonly referred to as being, “pigeon-holed”.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, your brand can also be too broad. When a brand is too broad, it makes it almost impossible to create a good or lasting impression. Having the proper branding makes it much easier to pursue the correct advertising avenues.
8 - Brands inspire employee loyalty- There are hundreds of jobs or careers people can choose to pursue to earn an income. So why work for you? Why care about what you and your company value? The average person needs more than just a job description to feel passionate and motivated about helping your business succeed. Having a logo and strong brand helps inspire employees. It gives them more than just a paycheck. It gives them something they can feel good about, and proud to be a part of. There are numerous studies that show when employees believe in the products or services they provide to people through their work, they are not just happier, they are also more productive!
So what does this all boil down to for you, and your business? We know the most critical element of branding is the logo, but it doesn’t stop with a well-developed logo. After that, you have to actually do something with it. You need to create a brand strategy and develop promotional lines.
At Embroidery for You! We always say that your left chest is prime real estate.
The left chest of business apparel is an easy way to display your brand and company name or logo. It shows that you are proud of what your company represents. We embroider work shirts, jackets, and an assortment of other apparel to help brand awareness. Customers love to receive “stuff” or swag. Simple promotional items such as can or water coolies, a golf towel, or tote bag is another easy way to display your logo and brand.
All of these things are important to your company’s success, and even contribute to the level of pay someone is willing to give you. If you’re not dressed well, or you have business cards that are printed off of your home printer, you’re not conveying the strong, established, and reliable message you want to convey.
Take a minute to think about the types of companies that you give your business to. Are they well-established? Do you instantly think about their logo, or a catchy tagline they have? I bet the answer was yes! Take a look at what message your business is currently conveying.
If you’re looking to appear more established, or build morale within your company, feel free to reach out to us for quote on custom embroidered apparel!
We look forward to “Embroidering For You!
Embroidery For You!
WPN – South County Chapter, St. Louis, MO
By Elaine Bayless, Organizer for the North Raleigh, NC Chapter
It’s time to talk about sadness. This is a difficult emotion to discuss because it is not pleasant. While some people understand the power of a good scare or adrenaline rush, very few people want to feel sorrow, sadness, depression, or agony. Sadness is an emotion that is often classified a symptom of mental illness (bipolar disorder, clinical depression). But sadness, like all the “dark side” emotions, is more than just a symptom or a feeling to avoid.
I’m not talking about pain, because that is its own entry. I am talking about the emotion of sorrow. We grieve for many reasons, but grief is not often allowed in our culture or our day to day lives. Many years ago, after a rough breakup, a friend advised me to try going on an antidepressant. Yes, I was very sad. But an antidepressant wouldn’t have resolved my sorrow. To quote Alanis Morissette, the only way out was through.
Summer is a great time to check out a new place, visit old friends or try something you've always wanted to try. It's also a time that many of us dedicate to catching up on some rest and relaxation! Why not make it a priority? In this newsletter, you'll find ideas and worthwhile reminders about sleep. Why it's important and how it helps us all to be better at what we do! Renewal and rejuvenation is the theme for summer, and we've got you covered!
Women's Power Networking: Coffee and Contacts, South County, MO
"I have just scratched the surface in learning about the organization, and look forward to learning more and participating in future meetups from this group."
-Diana Fuld on May 18, 2016
Women's Power Networking: Coffee and Contacts, N. Raleigh, NC
"I really enjoyed it-- the women were very welcoming and I can see that it will help grow our business by being a part of it!"
-Katy Norman on May 4, 2016
Women's Power Networking: Coffee and Contacts, Paoli, PA
"Diverse groups of professionals. Love the idea of networking through relationship. No pressure to refer. Membership requirements are reasonable. Has been valuable to growing my business."
-Anne Susas on April 18, 2016
Women's Power Networking: Coffee and Contacts, Creve Coeur, MO
"Fabulous group of business women!"
-Denise on May 20, 2016
It's always exciting to change things up, do something new and reinvent yourself and very soon we will be unveiling the new, totally responsive WPN web site. It will look very different than our current site with new colors and an opportunity to highlight our network, members and their events for the world to see. This is an exciting time for change. Thanks to our very own Pepper Oldziey for helping us with our new look.